DET @ GB
Over/Under 48.5 GB -6
Obviously we like Green Bay to win this one. That -6 line feels kinda soft too after GB covered the spread by almost 11 points in the first game. By the way, that last game total against MIN was 77. That was bonkers, especially considering the time of possession disparity. GB had the ball a little over 41 minutes out of 60, literally over ⅔ of the time! That’s probably going to happen in this one too.
This is not going to be a fun game for the Detroit Lions. They have a decent offense when healthy but without Golladay the passing game appears to be in shambles. In Week 1 Rookie WR87 Quintez Cephus led the team in targets with 10. I’m sure that’s more of an anomaly than anything else, for that particular receiver, but it emphasizes how shaky the passing offense is. Especially in this game, I don’t trust any WR on DET right now.
Against GB, Dalvin Cook was only able to amass 50 yards in week 1. His RB2 Mattison got 50, but ultimately I don’t expect Adrian Peterson to average the same 6.6 yards a carry he had last week again in this one. At 4700, I just don’t see the upside or the floor. Hard pass.
Aaron Rodgers for his career is 15-5 against the Lions and I foresee the W-L ratio only improving in this one. I wouldn’t say that the run game for the Packers was very efficient as neither of the RB1/RB2 Jones/Williams combo passed the hundred yard mark, but I think that’s just how this offense operates. They’re going to rely on Rodgers to slice and dice defenses apart. At 6900, Rodgers is a good choice against DET this week. If you like Rodgers, you like 17 target Davante Adams who just murderlized the Vikings secondary last week. Adams at 8100 is pricey no doubt but the target floor is safe and the RZ targets are safe. Last week the Lions allowed 5 catches to CHI WR1 Robinson on 9 Targets. But keep in mind, Trubisky isn’t the most accurate QB and Rodgers might be THE most accurate passer in the league. I feel good about Adams getting at least a TD in this one, on 10+catches and maybe MVS or Lazard hauling one in too. Those two are priced up to 4600 and 5300 and unfortunately they mostly suck and there’s really no reason to pay up for either in this matchup. We’ll wait until their price floors again, where it should be.
GB rushed the ball 31 times in their last game and I’d expect they run even more in this one. RB1 Aaron Jones at 7100 though? No. That’s the answer for Aaron Jones in most cases when he’s over 7000. Just say no. RB2 J. Williams is at a nice price at 4200 but there’s going to be more options to save you money. I feel good about him scoring a TD in this one, just not sure if there’s more upside than that. I like Adams for sure and then I like Rodgers as well just a little less because it is definitely chasing to expect a repeat performance.
I Like Green Bay to look good again and cover the spread.
SF @ NYJ
Over/Under 42.5 SF -7
Every single decent receiver who plays for the 49ers, ever played for the 49ers or ever thought about playing for the 49ers is hurt. Kittle is always injured, so that’s not a surprise, but filling out a lineup is becoming very concerning. Last week the RB/FB position accounted for 15 targets, which was just a shade under the 18 targets the WR/TE accounted for. With Kittle out, or at best a decoy, that ratio might shift towards Mostert and company at the RB/FB position.
That’s ultimately, where we should start to fill out our roster in this game: the SF backfield. Raheem Mostert at 6400 feels pricey but I do expect his usage to swing upwards slightly with the Kittle injury. And he was 5 yards shy of the receiving bonus last week in the passing game (On 5 Receptions!!). SF should rush the ball a ton and get this game over quickly. Coleman should get more reps and at 4000 he’s not a terrible dart throw, as SF always rides the hot hand in these situations. It’s hard to say what the rep counts will be, but Mostert should still be the primary back, at least to start out.
Last week the Jets did a great job of shutting down the run. I’m sure they’ll start out well in this one until they just get tired out. NYJ let the top 2 targets in their game last week catch 14 of 19 targets (John Brown and Stephon Diggs), the 49ers don’t have anyone close to that talent, so I can’t even recommend a receiver at any price point. The team just signed Mohammad Sanu who was worthless in NE when he could have had all the targets he could create separation for. Nope, I’m staying away from the receivers in this game. Gross.
The Jets are terrible. Their best offensive player Le’veon Bell is injured and mostly no one else is any good. Crowder is out and Sam Darnold is ghastly terrible anyways. I’m not taking anyone on this side. TE Chris Herndon could have a lot of targets but 6 catches on 9 targets for 34 yards is not winning you anything.
This should be an ugly game. I like SF to win by a lot and Mostert and the SF Defense at 4000 are my primary options.
NYG @ CHI
Over/Under 42 CHI -4.5
(UPDATE: Golden Tate is set to make his season debut for the Giants. I wouldn’t play him in his first game coming off a hamstring injury. I imagine it could take away usage from Barkley and Engram but more than anything I think it hurts Slayton who we weren’t playing anyways. Hopefully him playing only serves to give Barkley and Engram a little more room to operate.)
After watching film from their week 1, I wouldn’t say the Giants defense as a whole was bad. The Steelers QB made some incredible throws and his receivers made some incredible catches. I know the Giants lost by 10 but the quality of those two teams is closer than the scoreline would suggest. They got torched on slants though on many occasions. I don’t know if their zone coverage is designed to try to eliminate the long passes at the expense of the short passes. That’s how it appeared. Against dynamic backs like Cohen, I don’t see how that goes well this week.
Saquon Barkley at 8400 is one of my favorite expensive RB pivots. Everyone is on Zeke and everyone is on Henry and I don’t necessarily like his price point, as both of the aforementioned are cheaper plays, but the upside is the same and it’s arguable that his usage might even be higher than Elliott, if the Cowboys get down against the pass-happy Falcons. Granted, his 6 rushing yards on 15 attempts was putrid, but that Steelers front defensive unit is one of the best in the league. The Bears have some quality, but they are certainly not going to limit Barkley to 6 yards again. I’d be surprised if he doesn’t surpass 60 yards rushing in this one. He also had 6 catches for 60 yards and I’d expect that kind of volume and success to continue and more thank likely improve. As far as the rest of the offense, I don’t know if I’ve ever played Daniel Jones and I’ve had zero regrets along the way. He’s not a great scrambler and any nice passing numbers he has are primarily a result of having such a dynamic pass catcher in the backfield. I’m not touching the NYG wide receivers as the Bears secondary is their defensive strength. The one other guy I like on offense for the Giants is TE Evan Engram. At 5300, I’m not a fan of that pricetag but I expect him to lead the team in passing yards and receptions just behind Barkley in this one. If he sneaks in for a TD, which is very possible, considering he was injured quite a bit last year and still led the team in RZ targets. I’d expect something like 70ish yards on 8 catches and a TD from Engram in this one. With the very expensive RBs on this slate, who happen to be in great matchups, I know it’s going to be hard to pay up for any TE, but I’m going to try to find the cash for him in every way I can.
I like Mitch Trubisky for the same reasons I like Joe Burrow and Fitzmagic: he’s a gamer, nose to the grindstone type of guy and even though he makes a lot of mistakes, you can never count him out and through all 4 quarters he’s dedicated to try to win the game for his team. He’s also traditionally underpriced. At 5500 this week Mitch Trubisky, with his rushing upside, is one of my favorite plays at the QB position as a salary saver. The linebacking group of the Giants did a great job of getting to the QB last week and I expect Trubisky to scramble more than he did in week one as a result. In general, I think mobility at the QB position is the most important factor (followed by a great pass catching back) when playing against a solid blitzing defense: that’s Trubisky. I like him to run one in for a TD and also get 4800 Tarik Cohen involved in the passing game. Cohen is overpriced in my eyes, so I’m going to steer clear because for some reason Montgomery is starting to see a couple more targets out of the backfield. Hopefully the CHI coaching staff finds more ways to get Cohen involved in this one and going forward.
At the WR positions I think Robinson at 6400 could do well but I like the adot and the matchup better for Anthony Miller at 5200. He’s one of my favorite plays around 5k. Robinson is going to have top 25 cornerback James Bradberry following him around throughout the game and I think that gives a lot of opportunities for players like Miller and Cohen to step up. Against a solid linebacking group like NYG, I usually like to target a quality TE but at this stage in his career I’m not a big fan of Jimmy Graham. He’s so TD dependent and especially at 3800 I need more point per dollar upside than what he brings if he doesn’t catch a TD. The matchup is admittedly good though.
On CHI, I like Trubisky, Miller….and Cohen if you’re feeling frisky.
LAR @ PHI
Over/Under 46 LAR -1.5
By the time you’re reading this, the line has probably moved 20 times from one direction to the other and back again. Vegas doesn’t really have a solid feeling about this one. I feel better about the Rams in this one than Philly, they looked much better in week 1 against a stout Cowboys squad.
On the Rams side of the ball, I don’t really like either running back. They have a two-headed monster right now; last week Malcolm Brown had 18 carries and Cam Akers had 14 carries. A split like that is not something I want any part of in DFS. I’m not much of a fan of Goff in this one. The running backs are taking 32 plays away from the quarterback and unfortunately I don’t think Goff is very good anyways. They’re going to get the goal line touches and that takes away touchdown points for the QB. Both 6400 Robert Woods and 6700 Cooper Kupp are in play and they’re certainly priced like it. Between the two, I feel better about Kupp. I know this team wants to get him involved early in the season and this is a good matchup to do that. I also think he’s a low-key nice pivot off of chalk Adams, with the hopes that Aaron Jones or Lazard take away the TD points from Adams. I don’t really like the tight end position on this team and only kind of like the Rams defense. They’re fine, they did keep the Dallas Cowboys star quarterback to only one passing touchdown and it wasn’t even to a wide receiver, as he tossed one to Elliott. They’re not going to lose you a tournament, but I think Philly is going to try to pass the ball less with Miles Sanders healthy this week and that takes away from the interception upside.
Believe it or not Philadelphia has a six-game winning streak over the Rams. I don’t expect that to continue this week obviously. It’s nice to see Miles Sanders back but It just doesn’t make too much sense to invest money in him coming back from a significant enough injury that had him out of week one, particularly in a game that I don’t expect that they’ll win or be playing with a lead.
Carson Wentz is trash from a fantasy perspective and possibly a real life football perspective too. Some of that isn’t his fault either, that team is just so banged up at the wide receiver position and on offense overall in a lot of spots. If I had to pick an Eagle to draft, I’d look at either of the tight ends. Ertz at 5600, had a poor game last week even though he scored a touchdown. And Dallas Goedert appears to be a full-time staple in the PHI offense going forward. 5000 isn’t necessarily a terrible price for a player with the upside he has. It’s well within the realm of possibility for him to go 5X or 6X on that kind of price tag. The problem is he played so well last week that it’s really hard to expect chasing that kind of performance is going to work out well. He had 8 catches, 101 yards and a TD. That’s a hard act to follow. I’m not going to play a single player from this team
Ultimately the Rams are healthier and should win this one. Don’t get too invested in this Ram’s team though; next week the Bills should light them up if they can make it to next weekend healthy
JAX @ TEN
Over/Under 42 TEN -9
Everything about this matchup is simple to breakdown. I’m not going to make it any more complicated for either one of us than it needs to be.
We should consider getting pieces of the Jacksonville passing offense and run it back with Derrick Henry and Jonnu Smith.
Gardner Minshew at 5800 is a gunslinger. His team should be behind in this game and they’re probably not going to run the ball much as a result. I don’t like their backfield anyways as you’ll vividly remember from last week’s article. Gardner is going to pass the ball and he’s at a great price to help you afford the other guys you want to fit in at the skill positions. Going back to last season I’m actually a big fan of WR Dede Westbrook, who was a healthy scratch in week 1 after coming back from an injury to his shoulder that kept him out of a lot of training camp. I’m not saying I like Westbrook in this matchup but I do think that he gets some snaps in this one and because of that I’m slightly downgrading WR2 Cole. DJ Chark at 6000 is the guy you should be looking to grab a piece of in this offense, as he pairs very well with Minshew and he’s priced well. If you want to get fancy you can try drafting utility knife receiver Laviska Shenault at 4200. He was in on 32 of the 50 offensive snaps and just like in college they even had him taking some running back reps. Please for the love of God don’t take anyone else on that offense.
Derrick Henry had 31 carries last week. This is exactly what the Titans offense wants to be: they’re going to ride or die with Derrick Henry in almost every context. He doesn’t get the same kind of work in the passing game that RBs like Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook and Ezekiel Elliott garner (he did go 3/3 on targets last week), but none of these guys are going to surpass the usage on the ground that Henry gets. At 7900, he’s going to be very chalky with a juicy matchup against the very poor run defense of Jacksonville. Sign me up for a lot of that guy this week.
They should be running the ball so much that Ryan Tannehill doesn’t have to get in anyone’s way. This offense is without its number one receiver AJ Brown and unfortunately he represents most of what you’d want in the passing game at the wide receiver position on this team. Corey Davis is next in line to get targets with Brown absent but the only problem with him is that he’s not very good. Adam Humphries gets looks too, and with respect to targets, he’s fine, he caught six of seven last game. He’s not a red zone target with Henry absorbing so much usage in that area of the field. Humphries’ price is the most intriguing thing about him, at 3400. 7 targets at that price is pretty solid. Here’s your upside though: 8 targets for 45 yards and a broken play TD. That is absolutely the best case scenario. Alright, I like him at that price. I didn’t want to like him but I do this week.
This week I don’t like anyone else on the Tennessee Titans offense other than tight end Jonnu Smith. At 4200, he’s the only other red zone Target I trust on the Titans right now. He’s huge, a very easy target for Tannehill, and he should get rising usage going forward throughout the season, as long as he can stay healthy.
This is the game that I want to stack the most with Henry and a sprinkle of Humphries, coming back with Minshew and Charknado.
CAR @ TB
Over/Under 48 TB -9
This matchup is another one of those fairly straightforward ones and certainly a game you might want to get a piece of or fade in every way. I think your exposure should be minute and decisive or none at all. I’ll have little exposure.
The Panthers like to run their offense through CMC and this might be his hardest matchup yet. At 10,000, the pricetag is way too expensive to even consider with so many other RBs with better matchups on this slate. His usage alone will get you probably 20 fpts, it just won’t be good enough combined with the little money you have to spend elsewhere. Without CMC dominating the opposing defense, Teddy Bridgewater has his work cut out for him in this one. For his team to stay competitive, he’s going to need to be perfect. I don’t see it. He’s a bottom tier QB at best and probably not a starting QB on many other teams. He’s better than Tyrod and he’s better than Haskins, and that’s about it. Since I don’t like Bridgewater I don’t have too much interest in the WR position of the Panthers other than DJ Moore at 6300, fresh off of a 9 target but otherwise poor performance in Week 1. The secondary for TB is horrendous and this seems like a decent bounce back spot. His team will be throwing from behind and 10+ targets and slightly above 100 yards receiving is certainly in the realm of possibility. Robby Anderson looked great in Week 1 and his M.O. dictates that we can expect him to be a huge let down this week. I’m not touching him regardless of price or any other player on the Panthers for that matter.
A lot of football minds I respect highly feel really good about Ronald Jones this week against the poor run defense of Carolina. I don’t really understand the short term, mid term, or long term strategy for that backfield. Is it not unanimous that Fournette is significantly better at that position? He can’t be hurt already, they just signed him. And if he’s not the #1 back in that offense then he has to be #2 at the position right? Apparently the TB coaching staff doesn’t think so. They’d much prefer both Ronald Jones and outcast Shady McCoy above him. Here are their snap counts from Week 1: Jones 47%, McCoy 36%, Fournette 13%. If I thought this usage was indicative of the talent disparity in any shape, form or fashion, then I’d be more interested in trying to determine what I like about this backfield. It just doesn’t make sense. Last year, TB had no idea what to do with their backfield. They ran a committee approach like SF does, but they forgot the whole “hot hand” rationale that the 49ers reasoned for this decision. Instead, the team had no consistency and no reason to explain it. I think that mentality has carried over to this season and I’m not touching anyone in that trio until they figure things out. Not even Ronald Jones, I’m steering clear of him as well, because realistically each one of those backs could get a TD in any given game and this does nothing for anyone.
Finally, let’s talk about the good side of the offense. Tom Brady looked human in his first game against NO last week. I don’t know why we expected otherwise. New team, new offense, new players, that’s difficult for even the greatest QBs. I think Tom gets himself 2 or 3 TDs in this one and at 6500 he seems like a safe floor play. The runningback committee is going to have a lot of success in this one and the OC is going to give Tom a lot of high percentage play calls when he is passing to boost the confidence of the whole squad. The more confidence that offense has in now, status quo Tom, the better their chance of being successful. I think he’s too pricey for the GPPs I’ll be entering because I don’t see much upside for him with the game script. I would however like to make my great bambino call of the week for this team: I think Gronk gets in the endzone in this one. I feel really good about that. His snaps are low this season thus far and I don’t expect them to rise substantially in week 2, so at 4100 I’m not going to play him and his 1 TD from 3 targets in a lineup, but if you can find a Gronk TD prop bet I think that’s a better option.
I don’t even know if it’s worth noting since I’m not on Tom or the TB WRs in this matchup, but Godwin is out with concussion-related symptoms. Evans is still playing hurt so if you really had to grab a receiver in this one, Scotty Miller at 4100 isn’t terrible. He’s probably going to be somewhat popular due to his 5 catches and 73 yards last week. Lots of people are going to draft him banking on a usage bump without Godwin and I think that’s fair. Toss in another 2 targets and heck, the 100 yard bonus is possible.
I like TB to win and cover the 9 point spread in this one too, primarily due to their dumb run game that figures out a way.
DEN @ PIT
Over/Under 41.5 PIT -7.5
The gamescript suggests staying away from the Denver offense. Without overthinking anything I’m just going to move on by. I like the QB, but not against a machine of a defense like we saw against the Giants last week. Nope, not touching Denver.
This game has a low point total and a huge spread. Generally that lends itself to picking the favored Defense and their RB at 3800. The price is a little steep for the PIT Def, but against a Den offense without or with a limited WR1 in Courtland Sutton, it’s certainly worth your consideration. The problem with this game is the PIT offense. I don’t trust RB1 Connor or RB2 Snell to play particularly well in this one. Connor is going to get the carries but even if he gives you 80 yards and a TD, at 6800 that’s not enough. On an injured ankle, that seems like what he’s in for. His RB2 Snell has a great price at 4500, but with a healthy(er) Connor, he’s not getting the same workload he got last week. We can definitely more wisely spend our money at the RB position elsewhere.
I like PIT to win, but it’s going to be ugly and 20 to 12 wouldn’t surprise me. Very underwhelming from all angles.
ATL @ DAL
Over/Under 52.5 DAL -5
We’ve finally made it to the highest total on the slate! If you’re still reading, congrats for making it this far. Seriously, this game is going to have fantasy ownership out the wazoo.
The Falcons are a poor road team. I’m sure y’all already know that. They’re coming into this game off of a tough loss against the Seahawks in week 1. The reason everyone is targeting this game and in particular this team in week 2 stems from the 450 passing yards Matt Ryan had to start the season and even more in particular because of how condensed the target share was to Ryan’s receivers:
9 Receptions / 12 Targets / 130 yards / Calvin Ridley
9 Receptions / 12 Targets / 157 yards / Julio Jones
9 Receptions / 12 Targets / 114 yards / Russell Gage
From a fantasy stack perspective, it doesn’t get more beautiful than the ATL stat lines from that game. Without Austin Hooper the targets have to go somewhere other than Ridley and Jones and apparently they’re going to Gage. As Gurley and Ryan become better acquainted I’d be surprised if some of those Gage targets don’t get redistributed towards the RB1 as the season progresses.
I know it’s easy to be enamored by an offense after that kind of performance but I think this is a spot where we need to zag while everyone is zigging towards Matt Ryan and all 3 ATL receivers. In week 1, Dallas gave up all of its TDs to the RB position and kept WR1 Kupp to 40 yards on 5 targets and Woods to 105 yards on 6 targets. These numbers could be a reflection of how poorly they defended the RB position or how well they defended the studs on the LAR offense, but either way the result is still the same: Dallas is not going to let 2 much less 3 receivers blow up like Seattle did. I think either Julio or Ridley hits the hundred mark and the other gets a TD, and at their prices 7400 and 6800 respectively, the roughly 18 points either gets for you is not enough to justify their pricetags when we’re hoping for a couple of sub 5k guys to hit the same mark in their games. The smart play as boom or bust as it might be is targeting Gurley at 6100 and hoping he mirrors value similar to the 26 points the Rams RB had against Dallas. I’d argue that Gurley is a better back than Malcolm Brown and unlike Brown, has the potential to hit the 100 yard bonus with the same 2 TDs as well. I like Todd Gurley in this spot, but it is admittedly boom or bust because Gurley played 46% of the snaps against Seattle. It’s not often you want to roster a dude at 6100, playing less than 50% of the snaps. Was that snap count a result of throwing from behind against an MVP candidate in Russell Wilson? I think it’s that and the Falcons still easing Gurley into that offense. If ATL takes the lead early or at least doesn’t spend 3 quarters playing from over a TD behind, Gurley should get more snaps and in the RZ, he should get first looks at tumbling into the endzone. I think the Falcons know what they have at WR and they desperately want to gain some traction in the run game so they don’t spend the rest of the season throwing from behind to survive.
Desperate also describes this Dallas squad who spent years blaming away their failures on poor coaching. They have a new coach in town now, one with Super Bowl winning pedigree no less and they’re still 0-1 to start the season after losing their first game of the season as a clear consensus favorite over the Rams. Against the Falcons, here are the lines that we want to compare to the Dallas side of the ball.
Russell Wilson: 322 yards passing, 4 TDs
Pass Catching RB1: 2 receiving TDs
WR2: 95 yards, 1 TD
WR1: 92 yards on 8 Receptions (8 Targets)
Dak Prescott 6800 is admittedly a lighter version of Russell Wilson but he does some of the same things well, a mirror of that stat line is not unrealistic for Dak. Zeke is one of the best pass catching backs in the league and had the only receiving TD for Dallas in Week 1. Zeke Elliott at 8200 has the same upside as Barkley and CMC in their matchups and comes at a discount. And then at the WR position, some combination of Amari Cooper, Ceedee Lamb or Michael Gallup are more than capable of having a similar stat line to both SEA receivers from last week. Cooper had 14 Targets last week, and seems like a steal at 6300. I think he catches one in the endzone and surpasses the 100 yard mark in this one. I don’t have enough data to make an educated differentiation between Gallup and Lamb. Lamb should see higher ownership at the cheaper price 4700 (Michael Gallup at 5600) but I don’t expect either to be owned highly enough to even be concerned with ownership. I think a lot of people are going to be fixated with the ATL receiving stat lines from the last game and forget that this is a new week against a new defense.
Putting money on Dallas to do anything that you expect them to, win or lose, never ends well, but I feel good about betting this game on the moneyline with any free incentive money my bookie has for me. I don’t know about that -5 line though, trying to hit Dallas and the line is asking for trouble.
MIN @ IND
Over/Under 48 IND -3
Note to self, don’t draft the Vikings defense anymore against a good QB. I completely overvalued them last week. I mostly did a great job rostering the Washington football team defense, but anywhere I didn’t have them, I had the atrocious MIN D. Aaron Rodgers tore them apart on deep routes. I don’t expect Rivers will have the same kind of success.
Typically the rule of thumb against the Colts, is to attack their secondary. I think that’s why on paper the team looks so good against the run. It’s not necessarily because they’re good at defending the run, they’re just so bad at defending the pass that teams just choose to hit the homeruns because they can. In week 1, Gardner Minshew went 19/20 passing and even though he didn’t have many yards passing (173), Rivers kept throwing the ball to the JAX defense that the JAX offense didn’t have to travel as far to score.
(I just read the most Winstonian fact about Rivers today: He has 13 interceptions in his past 8 games dating back to the 2019 season. How crazy is that!!)
This game sets up for Dalvin Cook to do well on the ground and in the passing game and at 7600 I guarantee he’ll come in with super low ownership with the players around him. Once the Packers started pulling away in week 1, Dalvin lost a lot of usage and even though he didn’t have one of his best games by most metrics he still found the end zone twice and ended with a very respectable 21.8 fpts. I think he tops that this week fairly easily. I hate to say it but I like the MIN defensive unit in this one in a bounce back spot against a very turnover prone QB. Philip Rivers is not Aaron Rodgers.
At the MIN WR position, I don’t trust anyone in all contexts currently besides Adam Thielen because he has the highest usage on the team with the scrubs surrounding him. I don’t expect the Vikings to be throwing from behind much in this one so a repeat performance with 34 fpts seems unrealistic. Another 6 to 8 catches going over 100 yards receiving and a TD is fairly realistic though. At 7200, that’s not bad at all. On volume, yardage and scoring like that, that’s bare minimum 22 fpts and that’s 3Xing your pricetag there with some upside left over. I’ll probably go elsewhere this week instead of Adam Thielen because I feel so good about the spot Cook is in, but I’ll add him to the player pool for sure. For the same reason, I’m off of Cousins. He just doesn’t need to do that much for the Vikings to come away with this one if Cook plays as well as he’s in position to.
On the Colts side of the ball, there’s been a lot of talk leading up to this matchup talking up Jonathan Taylor at 5700. The coach said he’s now the starting RB for the squad, with Mack out for the season with an achilles injury. Last week Mack and Taylor combined for 50 % of the snaps and Nyheim Hines still out-snapped both of them at 53%. He’s going to have roughly the same carries and possibly more targets than Taylor and at 5300, I just don’t understand why you would pay up for the rookie Taylor when Hines could easily snipe both of the RB TDs in this game at a cheaper pricetag. It’s literally the exact same usage, going up against a better defense, with a severe experience disparity. I think Taylor and Hines are both viable in this matchup, although I lean slightly towards Hines for all the reasons listed above.
I don’t like the way Philip Rivers throws a football.
His throwing motion almost hurts to watch.
I’ve been watching a lot of tape on Rivers tonight and I felt the need to tell y’all that ^. Since I think Cook is going to have so much success on the ground, I don’t really want to play Rivers with a lowered time of possession. I am however not opposed to drafting WR1 Ty Hilton at 5700. I know 4500 Parris Campbell at his price is going to be more popular; I like both of them. I think either could do well in this matchup where they’re priced, possibly even both of them since they’re so cheap! With TE1 Doyle out for this game, I think there’s certainly a usage bump to someone on the offense. I tend to think that bump swerves towards one side of the runningback duo.
BUF @ MIA
Over/Under 41 BUF -5.5
Is it the year of the mobile QB or what? Murray and Cam and Lamar and Wilson, and let’s not forget Josh Allen. Josh had 47 yards rushing and 1 rushing TD in week 1. He did have himself over 300 yards passing, probably for the first time in his career, right? That must be something he worked on over the summer. I’m not sure, but it doesn’t hurt having his team add all star WR Diggs in the off-season.
The MIA defense is set up to be one of the most improved defenses of the season after backing up the truck in free agency to bring in some quality new faces, headlined by cornerback Byron Jones who ranks as the 3rd highest graded corner in the league. The secondary did well against the Patriots in week 1, allowing no passing TDs in the loss and that had as much to do with Cam Newton being terrible at throwing a football as it did with the quality of the new Miami secondary.
I say all that to say that Josh Allen and the Bills will not throw for over 300 yards in this matchup. Matching Newton’s 2 rushing TDs might be in the realm of possibility for QB Allen who is fairly priced with his rushing upside at 6700. I don’t like the timeshare at the RB position and I don’t like the WR/TEs because of the defensive quality of the Dolphins. If you have to have Josh Allen in your lineup, it’s probably best to play him on his own and then run it back with a Dolphin or two.
The Bills should win this one unquestionably, but I agree with the line in that it should be a low scoring affair.
On the Dolphins side of the ball, I don’t really like anyone. Once Davante Parker is healthy again we can revisit this team. Let’s move on before we spend any more time thinking about the Dolphins offense.
WAS @ ARI
Over/Under 46.5 ARI -7
I’ve been thinking about this matchup all day. Murray is priced sooo well that he sticks out like a sore thumb every time I scroll through the QBs.
Washington’s week 1 opponent, the Eagles, isn’t a good football team. They’re dealing with a lot of injuries on offense at just about every position. The Washington defense put up some solid stats in that game, but after reviewing game film, I think their success had more to do with Philadelphia being bad, than the WAS defense being necessarily good. They were talked up so much after week 1 that it’s almost easy to forget their defense was ranked 29th out of the 32 teams in the league by PFF. I was all over them last week, but I’m not picking the defense again here in a really tough spot against a mobile QB with a lot of confidence and an All World WR1 with a chip on his shoulder.
The WAS offense is collectively worthless because their current backfield is worthless as is their starting QB. I’m steering clear of them probably for the entire year unless they make changes. Everyone is talking up Logan Thomas as a cheap 3600 option. If you want to chase a historically underwhelming backup TE after he had the best game of his professional career, that’s on you. I’ll look elsewhere at the position.
Kyler Murray is priced at 6100 after rushing for 91 and getting a TD on the ground and in the air in week 1. I know he’s not a good passer and I know he makes a lot of mistakes, but I do think he’s underpriced for this matchup against an over-hyped WAS defense. At the skill positions, matchup-wise I like the TE, but unfortunately this team doesn’t have any skill at that position. I think your only option to pair with Murray on this offense is Deandre Hopkins at 7700. He had 151 yards on 14 of 16 targets and the yardage might not be a mainstay every week, but the targets very well could be as Kirk and Fitzgerald continue to find ways to fit into the offense with Hopkins leading the way. At the RB position, I”m not sure if I like either Kenyan Drake or Edmonds in this one. I’ll steer clear.
I like ARI and the points in this one. I think Murray does a fine job of running around a lot in this one and connecting with Hopkins for his first TD as a Cardinal.
KC @ LAC
Over/Under 47 KC -8.5
I have such high respect for the KC offense that I think Mahomes can be drafted in every game he plays and I trust him to return value more often than not. One thing I like about him is that he’s always turned up to 11. He spends every waking moment on the way to his next TD and never stays satisfied…always hungry…that’s the type of QB you should be drafting as often as you can. From a game theory standpoint I draft players that I think have to do well in order for their team to win a game. It doesn’t always work out, but I’d much rather pick a player that for a variety of reasons didn’t do well and his team lose than pick a highly skilled player whose team ended up winning without the need for any contributions from said player. The latter means I didn’t read the situation correctly.
In this game, I expect the chiefs to hand Clyde Edwards-Helaire the ball again and again and get him more involved in the passing game. He was excellent in week 1 on the ground with 138 yards rushing on 25 carries, but he was non-existent in the passing game with 2 targets and no receptions. That changes this week. The Chiefs want to round that part of the offense into form to prepare for tougher battles ahead. At 7400, I think Edwards-Helaire should see 4+ targets and get 15 to 20 carries on the ground. I like the floor. The upside is possible, but like I said I’m not sure he needs to follow up with a similar performance to that of Week 1 for the Chiefs to beat the Chargers. Just like the Bengals receivers, I think all of the Chiefs are going to do moderately well, but none of them have to play towards their ceiling to leave LA with a victory.
I like Edwards-Helaire as a floor play, but I don’t like anyone else on the team to outplay their pricetag.
I like the Chiefs in this one to win and cover the spread.
They always say that the best way to attack the Chiefs is through a pass catching RB. As luck would have it, the Chargers have a great one of those in Austin Ekeler whose price is a little too cheap at 6500. Here’s the problem: RB2 Joshua Kelley got a ton of goal line work in week 1, for no apparent reason. With Melvin Gordon out of the mix, this should be Ekeler’s offense, and he’s certainly earned the goal line work. I don’t think this coaching staff knows what it’s doing and I’m not sure it figures it out in week 2. The QB is terrible for the Chargers and I wouldn’t like any of the receivers if Mike Williams wasn’t priced so cheaply at 4200. I know he’s still getting back into form, but that’s a very attractive price for a WR2 that was 2nd in RZ targets last season. Austin Ekeler and Mike Williams are the only two I like on this side. If this team wants to be competitive in any way in this game, both of these two will need to ball out.
BAL @ HOU
Over/Under 51.5 BAL -7
Oh boy, this appears to be another straightforward gamescript and that does not look good at all for the Houston Texans.
Baltimore looks great this season on both sides of the football. They played well against the Browns, winning in dominant fashion a week ago 38 – 6. Everyone expected Lamar Jackson to play well, which he did, but the defense and the wide receiving unit came up just as big to start the year.
Unless I absolutely have to, I mostly lower my exposure to one off games with inclement weather. This is the only game on the slate where weather is supposed to be a factor. It’s likely to rain throughout the game and although I don’t think the water in and of itself is a limiting factor, I do think that coaches and medical staff are more likely to err on the side of caution this season when it comes to limiting reps and lowering exposure to risky field environments. Any kind of additional slickness added to a surface adds another element that can exacerbate missteps and that’s particularly important to preventing injury to a Houston QB coming off of knee surgery and an MVP QB in Baltimore whose team would be all kinds of lost if he went down.
Each of the QBs and the skilled players on both sides I’ll be avoiding in DFS. I think David Johnson and JK Dobbins are the most likely to see a bump in usage with some more work on the ground in the rainy environment, but depending on the rain amount, I’m not sure how much of that quantity translates to quality. If you like anyone in this matchup, by all means draft them. I’m not going to talk you off anyone except for maybe Brandin Cooks, anyone else could arguably have a good game. I just won’t be playing them.
I’ll take the under in this one and still feel good about BAL covering the 7 point spread.
Good Luck in Week 2!!